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From Hops To Wheat, Growing Our Own

Time for an update from the fields at Rogue Farms.


We just finished planting all of our ingredients for this year, from the big crops like Dream Rye to the small ones like our patch of cucumbers.

Here’s a early look at what’s going to be brewed, mashed and distilled for future batches of Rogue beer, spirits, cider and sodas.

We grow seven varieties of hops in our 42-acre hopyard at Rogue Farms.
We grow seven varieties of hops in our 42-acre hopyard at Rogue Farms.

Hops

Most of our hops are just starting to reach the top of the trellis wires, about 18 feet off the ground. Look for flowers to emerge later this month and our first cones in July. Harvest begins in mid-August with Freedom hops.

Cucumbers are one of the oldest cultivated plants, dating back to 3000 BC in ancient Mesopotamia.
Cucumbers are one of the oldest cultivated plants, dating back to 3000 BC in ancient Mesopotamia.

Cucumbers

We added another 2024 square feet to our cucumber patch this year, more work for our gardener Andrew who planted each one of those seeds by hand.

But look at them now! A week later and they’re already sprouting. When we’re done picking the cukes this fall – again all by hand – we’ll have an even bigger crop to flavor our Spruce Gin, Pink Spruce Gin and Citrus Cucumber Soda.

The origin of rye is a wild grass found in Turkey. It wasn’t until the Bronze Age in Europe that rye was widely cultivated for food and brewing.
The origin of rye is a wild grass found in Turkey. It wasn’t until the Bronze Age in Europe that rye was widely cultivated for food and brewing.

Dream Rye

Our Dream Rye has headed and kernels are filling with a liquid known among farmers as milk. The milk contains the starches we’ll later floor malt and mash to craft Oregon Rye Whiskey. But first the milk has to dry and harden in the kernels. We’ll reap, rake into windrows and thresh the grain in July.

Marionberries are the most commonly grown variety of blackberry. They originated in Marion County, Oregon – just across the Willamette River from Rogue Farms.
Marionberries are the most commonly grown variety of blackberry. They originated in Marion County, Oregon – just across the Willamette River from Rogue Farms.

Prickless Marionberries

Just this week we saw our first marionberry blooms. That’ll make our honeybees happy! These two new acres of Prickless Marionberries won’t be ready to pick until next summer. But we can wait.

Despite their reputation for heat, jalapeños are near the middle of the Scoville Scale for spiciness.
Despite their reputation for heat, jalapeños are near the middle of the Scoville Scale for spiciness.

Jalapeños

This year’s crop of jalapeños are looking good. They’ll produce pretty white flowers in July, again making our honeybees happy. Peppers will appear in August but we won’t pick until October, giving our jalapeños more time to ripen on the plant and turn red.

Dream Pumpkins flower in late July, producing beautiful orange blooms. The first green fruit appear in August.
Dream Pumpkins flower in late July, producing beautiful orange blooms. The first green fruit appear in August.

You’ll taste the difference that farm fresh ingredients make in Rogue Farms Pumpkin Patch Ale and Pumpkin Savior Wit. Real pumpkins, nothing canned or pureed, and no artificial pumpkin flavoring. We’ll pick this year’s patch in September and when we’re done cleaning, chopping and roasting our pumpkins, John begins brewing with them.

Do you see bourbon growing here? We do.
Do you see bourbon growing here? We do.

Wigrich Corn

We learned a lot from our first crop of Wigrich Corn. This year we planted the seeds two months earlier and expect to harvest it in September. Up next in our corn field, look for tassels to appear and then the ears to emerge.

Green for now, our McKercher wheat will transform into amber waves of grain in July.
Green for now, our McKercher wheat will transform into amber waves of grain in July.

McKercher Wheat

One of our spring planted malting grains, our ten-acre field of McKercher Wheat will be ready for harvesting in August. That’s about the same time as our hops. Two harvests at the same time keeps us on our toes, but it’ll be worth it.

Want to know what’s going on with your favorite Rogue beer or spirit? Then get out to Rogue Farms this summer and see for yourself. We’re now open every day of the week with free tours on the weekend.

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